Dan Tuohy injury to open door ahead of Twickenham trip

Ulster lock fractured forearm as soon as he replaced Paul O’Connell in Ireland win over Wales

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell claims lineout ball during the Six Nations match against Wales. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell claims lineout ball during the Six Nations match against Wales. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Sat, Feb 8, 2014, 18:25

Ireland and England remain on course for the Triple Crown.

Dan Tuohy’s fractured forearm, sustained in his first action after replacing Paul O’Connell today, reopens the door for Mike McCarthy and Donnacha Ryan to feature off the bench at Twickenham on February 22nd.

However, Iain Henderson is the current frontrunner to replace his Ulster teammate.

“Dan’s off to see a specialist, we’ll know more next week but we’d be pretty sure his forearm is fractured,” said Schmidt after the 26-3 win over Wales. “It was his first action so disappointing for Dan.”

McCarthy plays for Leinster away to Zebre tomorrow, while Ryan may return from his latest knee injury in the next week to 10 days.

Cian Healy and Jonathan Sexton also sustained knocks during the game and will be monitored this week when the squad gathers on Wednesday and Thursday in Clonmel.

“We’ll reassess the past two weeks and try to plot some sort of course going forward to Twickenham. That’s obviously a massive game.”

One thing they don’t need to reassess is the lineout maul (although it was the weather forecast that dictated Schmidt’s forward orientated, kick for territory game plan).

“The maul was a potent weapon for us, especially as the conditions got worse,” said Paul O’Connell. “ It’s a great way to hold onto the ball and put a team under pressure, particularly when you have a lead.

“All the provinces maul very well and you come into camp and there is a mixture of ideas which helps, add that to John Plumtree and Anthony (Foley) would have had a few ideas when he was here in week one when he was here with the Wolfhounds.

“Lineout wise we have four excellent jumpers. We were able to focus on a small menu because Wales don’t usually give you many lineouts. So it focuses the mind and you get better at a shorter number of lineouts, which was probably a good thing for us when we wanted to deliver off the top and when we wanted to maul.”

Tries from Chris Henry and Paddy Jackson, allied to 14 points from the boot of Johnny Sexton, gave Ireland their second win of the championship, but O’Connell knows it will ge harder.

“We knew it was going to be really tough but we would have been disappointed if we weren’t two wins out of two at home, so it gets a lot harder from here on.

“I think we did very well in the first half, our discipline was excellent and Johnny Sexton’s kicking was excellent.

“I suppose that kept a lot of pressure on Wales and particularly with Johnny’s kicking game, with the conditions, if you get a small bit of a lead the other team has to play and it becomes very tough.

“I’m very surprised by the result but it’s a very good one for us.”

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